The Saizen Challenge

The mission: Scour the store for good buys in just one hour.

We heard about Saizen as soon as it opened–everything in the store for P85? This, we had to see for ourselves. We weren't too optimistic about the stuff we'd find (what can you really buy for less than a hundred bucks these days?), but we ended up leaving the store overwhelmed by the sheer number of everyday things in stock, and pretty happy with our purchases.

The mission:
Scour the store for something we think is a good buy for the 85-peso price tag
The challenge: Decide on just one thing, and do it in one hour

Portable ashtray
Picked by: Dyan, editorial assistant
"My portable ashtray is not only cute but as the label says, it 'improves the manners of smokers.' MMDA would be happy with this since one of their campaigns, after all, is 'Ang maliit na basura, ibulsa na lang muna.' I have yet to see how durable it is and how well it can contain cigarette smell but I think it's worth a shot. I don't smoke so I'll give it to a friend who does and let her be the judge of its effectiveness."
Finger puppets
Picked by: Warren, associate art director
"I chose the finger puppets because I think it's just right for the price. It's something that I can use but I'm not willing to spend too much on. I can use it to entertain and educate my one-and-a-half-year-old daughter."
Lavender sachet
Picked by: Trixie, web producer
"The scented lavender sachet was a cute buy for P85! The charming sachet would have cost a little over a hundred pesos in other stores. I plan to put it on my bedside table or save it as a gift for my girls who love lavender and scents."
"Gymnastics of the heads" (Wooden brainteaser puzzle)
Picked by: Jo, managing editor
"I've seen puzzles like this in other stores for more than twice the price, so I think it's a bargain at P85. I was a little worried that the instructions would be in Japanese, but one of the sales assistants was nice enough to open the packaging and assure me that, though it is in Japanese, the answer key is illustrated and completely comprehensible. Good thing, too, because I still can't crack the puzzle without it!"

Cheap but Weird

One-price Japanese stores are not only treasure troves of cheap finds but also the weirdest and the most unpractical things ever created. Here are a few from Saizen:

The experiment kits sound great until you actually read what kind of experiments these are. Let's make a motor, hovercraft, telescope, guitar and air shooter are some of the sane ones. Then it gets weirder: "Let's cultivate salt" and "Let's observe ants." Everything pales compared to this one, though: "Let's make a mysterious amoeba." Let's not. Mysterious amoeba
Violating at first sight is the portable banana holder. Available in bubblegum colors, it's meant for huge bananas. Question: what if your banana's straight? Banana holder
It's called a "transparent mask brat" but I know no brat who'd wear this without the threat of ampalaya. With Frida eyebrows, swirling anime blush and drool as big as half a lip, this mask is strictly for Halloween or April Fool's only. Transparent mask

Saizen is located at the 3rd Level East Wing, Robinsons Galleria, Quezon City.

Have you visited Saizen? Let us know of any interesting finds:

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